Cross Pointe Church

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1800 Satellite Boulevard
Duluth, GA 30097

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Sunday 9:15 AM

Sunday 11:00 AM

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678-812-4500

Cross Pointe Blog

in Gospel

Ambassadors

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“All this is from God, who reconciled us to Himself through Christ and gave us the ministry of reconciliation; that God was reconciling the world to Himself in Christ, not counting people’s sins against them.  And He has committed to us the ministry of reconciliation.  We are, therefore, Christ’s ambassadors, as though God were making His appeal through us. We implore you on Christ’s behalf: Be reconciled to God.”  2 Corinthians 5:18-20

According to Wikipedia, an ambassador is: The highest-ranking diplomat who represents a nation.  This diplomat is usually stationed in a foreign country to advance the agendas of his home government.  An ambassador is not a citizen of the country where he lives.  His sole purpose in living there is to represent his home nation and advance its interests in the host country.

In this passage, Paul calls Christians ambassadors of Christ.  This comparison is a wonderful picture of the purpose of each Christ follower’s life.  We, too, live in a place that is not our home.  For our citizenship is in heaven.  Have you ever wondered why God prolongs calling us home to live with Him forever?  This passage answers that question…it is because He has appointed His followers as ambassadors on this earth.  We are His representatives, through whom He accomplishes His plan and purposes. 

And what is the main work of Christ’s ambassadors?  It is to share the message of reconciliation.  You see, Christ was God’s first ambassador to earth.  He came to reconcile mankind to our Creator because our rebellion made us His enemy.  What does it mean to be reconciled to God?  It means to be won over, or to be made right with God.  Christ’s message was one of repentance and faith.  And now, Christ has committed His ministry of reconciliation to His followers.  It’s just as if, Paul writes, God is making His appeal through us.  And what is God’s appeal to every person on the face of this earth?  Be reconciled to God!

What if you began to live your life intentionally as an ambassador of Christ?  Would your attitude, motives, words and actions change?  It is an amazing truth that Christ has entrusted His ministry to us.  It is for His sake that we are living in a land that is not our eternal home.  May our lives proclaim His message: Be reconciled to God!

Lord Jesus, Thank You for reconciling me to God through Your sacrifice on the cross.  It is overwhelming to think that You have entrusted me with Your message.  Please give me Your heart for those who need to be reconciled to God.  Show me how to love and serve them, and how to boldly share the gospel with humility and grace.  It is in Your name I pray.  Amen. 

A Fresh Start

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“Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come!”  2 Corinthians 5:17

Have you ever wished that you could have a do-over?  Or maybe that you could turn back time and start over?  Regret is one of the worst feelings in the world.  And most of us, if we were honest, would admit to having regrets over past actions and mistakes.

Paul says, “the old has gone, and the new has come?”  What “old”?  The old life, the lost life, the condemned life, the life that was separated from God has passed away.  “Passed away” here is used most commonly as a reference to time passing.  Just like time passes and is gone, never to come again, so is the old life without Christ once we are born again.  This old life was full of guilt, shame, pride, selfishness, and condemnation…and was destined for the wrath of God.

So what does Paul mean by “new”?  The meaning of this word is just wonderful!  It means, “unused or unworn.”  We don’t receive a recycled life in Christ.  We receive a brand new life!  It’s as if the old life never existed at all.  This is good news! 

In 2 Corinthians 5:17 is a wonderful reminder of the newness that we have in Christ.  God’s grace is bigger than our regrets.  And even though the consequences of past mistakes may linger, the old has gone and the new has come.  While this verse is directly related to the one-time gift of salvation, God’s grace is certainly also experienced daily.  Lamentations 3:23 tells us that God’s mercies are new every morning.  His grace and mercy is new, fresh every day.

This gives us reason for great joy.  There is no reason to look back and regret.  In Christ, we have been given the ultimate do-over.  Each day is a gift, a new opportunity to live a life that pleases God in His strength, not our own.  Are you carrying the burden of regret?  If so, lay it at the foot of the cross and embrace the newness of God’s great mercy for you today.

Father, thank You for the gift of this day.  I want to live for Your sake, and leave my old life where it belongs…in the past.  Please help me to trust You to use even my mistakes for my good and Your glory, just as You have promised to do.  In Jesus’ Name, Amen.  

Every Christian's Goal

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“I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus.”  Philippians 3:14

If Paul already has Jesus through faith, should he still “press on” towards Him as Paul wrote in his letter to the Philippians?  Here in verse 14 Paul reiterates that he is pressing on, “toward the goal to win the prize.” 

Isn’t salvation the prize?  Apparently it is not.  In fact, salvation is not the goal or the prize.  Salvation is what comes as a result of pursuing the prize.  The prize is Christ.  The goal is to know Him.  He is the author, finisher and the subject of our faith.  This perspective changes everything.  If we make salvation or heaven our goal, once our eternity is secured what motivation have we to “press on,” as Paul wrote?  I am not suggesting that Christians shouldn’t long for heaven…quite the opposite is true.  We should long for heaven because it is there that we will finally see Jesus face to face. 

Paul’s goal was to know Christ and his prize was to be with Him forever.  Matthew Henry once said, “Wherever there is true grace, there is a desire for more grace.”  We run hard after Christ in order to know Him more.  Such desire and pursuit proves that we have experienced His true saving grace.  We “press on” because God has adopted us as His own children.  What child doesn’t want to know His earthly father?  It delights a son to commune with his father.  How much more, then, should it delight us to grow in relationship with our perfect Heavenly Father?

How, then, do we run hard after Jesus?  First, by forgetting what is behind.  This doesn’t mean that we never look back.  It means that we should only look back only for the sake of pressing forward.  Then, we strain towards what is ahead.  We must set our hearts on the True Goal and then order all else around Him instead of squeezing Him in to an already-full calendar. 

None of this is possible without an attitude of dissatisfaction.  Paul began this passage by acknowledging that he had not “arrived” spiritually.  Despite the mighty ways God was using him, the souls he had seen converted, the churches he had planted or his suffering for the sake of the gospel, he wanted more…more Jesus.  What about you?  Are you comfortable where you are, or does your heart long to know Him more? 

Father, Please develop a holy dissatisfaction in my soul that drives me to chase after Your Son.  In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

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